I have gotten a few emails from readers asking a few common questions: 1) how do you distinguish between the two sprouts, 2) how do people in South Korea use these sprouts differently, 3) do these sprouts taste different? So, here, we will compare the two sprouts and ask the question: ‘soybean sprouts vs mung bean sprouts, what is the difference?’
Recently, I wrote about mung bean sprouts and their purpose in Korean food culture. The sprouts, named ‘sukju’ or ‘sukju-namul’ are a common ingredient in popular dishes such as bibimbap, mung bean pancakes, and some stews. Sukju-namul muchim is a popular Korean side dish salad served often in people’s households. Light and refreshing, it has a crispy and crunchy texture. Let’s learn how to make it here!
While uncommon in western cooking, different types of bean sprouts have been used by many East Asian cultures in their cultural cooking. Mung bean sprouts are no exception. You can find these sprouts used all across Asia in some of the most culturally influential dishes internationally. For example, think of mung bean sprouts used in the Thai dish pad thai, the Vietnamese dish pho, and the Korean dish bibimbap. In South Korea, while used less often than soybean sprouts, people use mung beans as a fresh and crunchy ingredient to a multitude of dishes. Here, we will discuss the use of mung bean sprouts in Korean cooking as well as discuss the cultural significance of this ingredient. Let’s get started!